this is the very first picture of the very first hat i ever made, which was about two years ago when i lived in a tiny cottage in auckland, new zealand, and had just finished writing an MA dissertation on the poetics of paradise, eager to get on my grandma’s sewing machine and start making all the things i had been dreaming of once i had…free time! (the hat turned out to be too small for me, but remains to be one of my all time favourites, red lace + copper buttons = yes!)
just weeks later i married the loveliest guy i’ve ever met and we streamlined our lives to hit the road in search of places to call homes. to make a long story short, first of all we honeymooned by wwoof-ing at the most beautiful lavender farm/vineyard on waiheke island, then bicycled through indochina, built permaculture gardens and swam with humpback whales in hawaii, went on a summer music tour of the u.s. in an ’85 toyota van, worked on costumes/puppets for cirque de soleil in oregon, took some time out in indonesia to work on various writing, music and animation projects and are now back in new zealand for a short spell before heading to europe where we’ll visit friends by bicycling from denmark to france, where, finally, we will stop for a couple of months to live in an ex-nunnery and make a short animated film on “home.”
my sewing kit has come on all our travels, a little basket full of just a few carefully picked and colourful threads, buttons, bobbins, pens, rotary cutter, scissors, lace and ribbons just waiting to explode somewhere productive. i quickly learned that not only were my hats my bread & butter, but i could make them anywhere. in hawaii i posted a craigslist message saying “if i only had a sewing machine…” with pictures of hats i had made and asking if anyone would be interested in lending me their machine for a few months. i got two offers within half an hour and was given a singer fashionmate by a lovely old man who owned an antique shop in wailuku who said “i’m just happy to see this thing put to good use.” and so thus was the beginning of this sort of nomadic seamstress lifestyle. there’s always fabric to be found, and always a sewing machine to borrow, and always a local market to set up shop at.
this is the first time i’ve actually followed through with setting up an online shop and i’m working on being more consistent with virtual reality, so please bear with me.